A jury in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of West Virginia ruled on Thursday in favor of McGuireWoods LLP client CSX Transportation Inc. in a case involving two Pittsburgh lawyers and a West Virginia physician who were alleged to have engaged in a conspiracy to fabricate asbestosis claims against the rail company.
After a two-week trial, the jury found that lawyers Robert Peirce Jr. and Louis Raimond, together with radiologist Dr. Ray Harron, conspired to produce false medical evidence for 11 CSX employees who later filed suit against the company. CSX sued the defendants under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), arguing that the two attorneys used their law firm, which was not part of the lawsuit, in furtherance of the conspiracy. After only two and a half hours of deliberation, the jury awarded CSX $429,240.47 in damages, which may be trebled by statute.
“We are very pleased with the verdict and thank the jury for their thoughtful attention to the evidence,” said Sam Tarry, a partner at McGuireWoods. “We are privileged to have represented CSX in this matter and, as the company has said all along, this case was never about the money. It was about the integrity of our civil justice system and the protection of CSX employees from abuse.”
Tarry and McGuireWoods partner Ron Franklin as well as associates Mitch Morris and Lindsey Hargrove handled this matter on behalf of the client. The law firm of Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough LLP also assisted in this trial.